Say it to your town

What do you imagine when you say a city application? Will you remember something that will help you, for example, locate the nearest café or parking place? In addition to such apps, urban applications allow you to interact directly with the city you live in.
Successful urban communities are those in which citizens can interact and communicate with each other. Using state-of-the-art smart phone applications, municipalities can enable them to become direct actors in city planning, transport strategies, or environmental protection.

Affairs in your neighborhood

Every day brings new challenges we face in dynamic city environment. An application from the sunny Santa Monica, CitySwipe allows citizens to comment on planned changes. It works on a similar principle to Tinder. When you agree with the proposal, you drag to the right when you agree, and drag to the left if not.
The Slovak OdkazPreStarostu app allows you to report a problem in your neighborhood via mobile phone, whether it is a mess or a broken street lamp. Immediately after posting, each impetus is visible and citizens see whether it will be resolved quickly and efficiently. Since 2010, the portal has been run by the Institute for Well-Managed Society, and besides cities, municipalities are also involved in the project.

Two-way communication
Cities are slowly learning how to use the Internet for data-driven services while looking for new ways to interact with citizens. They launched an interesting app at the end of last year in Brazil. Citizens of 5570 Brazilian cities can rate their self-government in ColAb.. These evaluations contribute to further urban strategies.
In Tartu, Estonia, they plan to create a new mobility solution and an intelligent transport system. People who work on a daily basis send geotag data about their location and route. This will allow you to better set the final solution.
Barcelona, one of the top smart cities, uses residents to monitor air quality. Residents get a toolkit with data processor and sensors and upload their observations to a public online platform.

Urban applications for creating an urban identity
For many big cities represent lonely and alienated spaces where people loose contact with one another. One solution is probably to escape to the countryside or small towns in an effort to establish a better and deeper relationship with their environment. Urban applications, however, address problem of alienation and help to solve it. By expressing an opinion about affairs in their city, citizens establish deeper relationship with it. At the same time, cities take an advantage of getting valuable insights from citizens about things and planned projects such as construction projects or transport solutions.
Other innovative ways in which cities can interact with their citizens will be presented at the ITAPA conference in the Smart Cities panel.

 


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